Word: Stop Spelling and Grammar Check for Specific Text

Depending on what kinds of documents you put together, you might find yourself using text that gets marked by Word as a spelling or grammar error, when it's actually not. As an example, I frequently refer to long filepaths or strange product names. It can be annoying to have the little red and green squiggly underlines telling you it's wrong, and just as aggravating to constantly be telling Word to ignore it. Here's how you can tell Word to completely disregard the spelling or grammar of a specific piece of text:

First, highlight (select) the text that you would like Word to ignore. Then, go to the 'Review' tab on the ribbon, and click the 'Language' button. Choose 'Set Proofing Language...'. In the window that comes up, put a checkmark next to 'Do not check spelling or grammar'. When you press the 'OK' button, you've successfully told Word to stop telling you there's something wrong with that text. What a relief!

Why would you want to do this? Well, the alternative options aren't so good. You can start adding all of these words to your dictionary, effectively cluttering it. You can turn off your spelling and grammar check completely, which means you won't be catching any other unintentional misspellings or grammar errors. Using this feature is really the smartest thing to do.

I'd just like to wish any of you Canadians lucky enough to live in a province that recognizes the upcoming Civic Holiday a fantastic long weekend! I'll be bringing you another great tip next week. Thanks for reading!
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Excel: Change the Colour of the Gridlines

Ever wanted to change the colour of the gridlines in Excel from that boring default grey to something a bit more lively? As always, I bring you good news: it can be done! Here's how:

Go to the 'File' tab on the ribbon, and choose 'Excel Options'. In the window that comes up, you're going to want to click the 'Advanced' option from the menu on the left side. On the right side, scroll down until you get to the 'Display options for this worksheet' area. Click the paint bucket icon next to 'Gridline color' and you'll be able to choose a new colour for your gridlines. See the screenshot below for an example - I've made my gridlines orange.

"Which worksheets does this affect?" By following these steps, you're only changing the colour of the gridlines in the worksheet you currently have open. It will not change the gridlines in any other tabs, nor will it change the colour for new spreadsheets that you create in the future.

"Can I do this in Excel 2007?" Yes, it's pretty much the same process except you'll find 'Excel Options' under that round office button instead of the 'File' tab.

"This is silly, why would I ever want to do this?" Some people want higher or lower contrast when it comes to the gridlines, or they just want to make their spreadsheet a little more visually appealing. I have found myself changing the colour of my gridlines if I happen to be working a lot with borders that are grey and I need to really be able to distinguish between borders and gridlines.
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PowerPoint: Laser Pointer

There are lots of great features in Microsoft's latest release of PowerPoint, but there's one little one that I really think was a clever idea: a built-in laser pointer.

"Built-in laser pointer?!"

That's right, my friends! As your presentation is running, what you need to do is hold down the Ctrl button on your keyboard and then left-click and drag around the screen and you'll notice your cursor has changed into a glowing dot that you can use to point out whatever you'd like on the slide. It's just like a laser pointer, without having to worry about the batteries dying!

Don't like the colour? No problem. You can choose between red, green, and blue by going to the 'Slide Show' tab on the ribbon and choosing 'Set Up Slide Show'. Choose from the drop-down under 'Show Options' where it says 'Laser pointer color'.
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PowerPoint: Save As Video

This feature is so long overdue! At last, you can save your PowerPoint presentation as a video without the hassle of searching for and using a third-party application. I just have to say:

Three cheers for PowerPoint 2010!

Go to the 'File' tab on the ribbon, and choose 'Save & Send'. Next, click 'Create a Video'. It takes a while, depending on how large your file is, but be patient and you'll find yourself with a Windows Media Video (.wmv) file in the end that you can easily play on any media player that supports that format.
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